March 06, 2010

Schools still are making the same mistakes...

From the Editor, Column, American School Board Journal>>, Glenn Cook, Editor-in-Chief, April, 2008.  

Having grown up on the Texas Gulf Coast, I know a little about disasters, natural and man made. Galveston County, where I was raised, is home to the two worst disasters in Texas history -- the 1900 hurricane and the 1947 explosion that rocked my hometown of Texas City. Yes, it's a somewhat dubious distinction, but a definite conversation starter.  And now, in a photo essay on Page 44, it's time to look back at number three on the list.

The March 18, 1937, explosion of the London School in New London, Texas, is the worst school disaster in U.S. history. More than 300 people were killed in a blast that, by all rights and reason, could have been avoided.  Seventy-one years later, the survivors still bear the emotional and physical scars from that day. And 71 years later, schools still are making the same mistakes in terms of how they keep chemicals safely away from children.

..."Time to Heal>>" is both a slice of history and a cautionary tale for school leaders. Read it and appreciate what the survivors have lived with for more than seven decades, then go and ask questions about your district's chemical safety plans. You'll be glad you did.